New York Jets center Connor McGovern was standing on the sidelines preparing to play in their season opener against the Buffalo Bills when he overheard the devastating news confirming the extent of Aaron Rodgers’ injury.
McGovern, 30, told the media Wednesday that he had been standing near head coach Robert Saleh when staff told him that Rodgers had likely sustained a torn Achilles after going down in the Jets’ opening series on Monday night.
“I happened to be standing next to Saleh about to run on the field when he asked one of the athletic trainers and I eavesdropped a little bit, and it was shocking,” he recalled.
“I wasn’t sure I heard what I heard and, then I saw look on Saleh’s face and that kind of confirmed that my eavesdropping was right.”
McGovern praised the team’s ability to refocus, adding that he’s confident that Rodgers will make a swift recovery.
“It’s definitely a heavy blow, and my prayers are with Aaron. I know he’s in surgery here soon – he’s going to attack this rehab and I think he’ll probably heal faster than anyone’s ever seen someone come back from an Achilles.”
Rodgers broke his silence on social media Wednesday, saying the season-ending injury has left him “completely heartbroken.”
“I’m completely heartbroken and moving through all of the emotions, but deeply touched and humbled by the support and love. Please keep me in your thoughts and prayers as I begin the healing process today.”
He continued, “The night is darkest before the dawn. And I shall rise yet again.”
The Jets have fully backed Zach Wilson in the aftermath of Rodgers’ injury, although Saleh said Wednesday that the team will continue to explore its options at the quarterback position.
Speaking for the rest of the locker room, McGovern said the team is standing behind Wilson, who has shown tremendous growth in the offseason.